CNN didn’t check their facts before jumping to wild accusations against an innocent girl.
But their claims that they made were completely untrue.
CNN made an embarrassing admission on how they ran a false race hoax.
At the end of last month a Duke University volleyball player claimed a man repeatedly shouted racial slurs at her during a game against Brigham Young University (BYU) in Provo, Utah.
“My fellow African American teammates and I were targeted and racially heckled throughout the entirety of the match. The slurs and comments grew into threats which caused us to feel unsafe,” Rachel Richardson said in a statement she tweeted.
Video records of the match didn’t reveal any slurs being said and if the n-word had been hurled or repeatedly shouted there would have been many witnesses in the stands.
Despite the lack of evidence and the indications that the story wasn’t true CNN gave extensive attention to the allegations. Jim Acosta invited former NAACP President Cornell William Brooks on just so that he could blast how BYU handled the incident.
However the BYU investigation concluded that there was no “evidence to corroborate the allegation that fans engaged in racial heckling or uttered racial slurs at the event” after they reviewed all available video and audio recordings.
“From our extensive review, we have not found any evidence to corroborate the allegation that fans engaged in racial heckling or uttered racial slurs at the event. As we stated earlier, we would not tolerate any conduct that would make a student-athlete feel unsafe. That is the reason for our immediate response and our thorough investigation,” BYU said in a statement on Friday. “As a result of our investigation, we have lifted the ban on the fan who was identified as having uttered racial slurs during the match. We have not found any evidence that that individual engaged in such an activity. BYU sincerely apologizes to that fan for any hardship the ban has caused.”
CNN’s John Avalon admitted Monday that the network should have been more skeptical.
“Healthy skepticism is always a virtue, but this doesn’t read like a coverup. Instead, it feels like there was a rush to judgment because of a well-intentioned impulse to believe the Duke player’s accusations,” Avalon said.
Avalon said that BYU hasn’t accused Richardson of lying, just that there wasn’t evidence to back up her claims.
“Systemic racism is real and corrosive to the soul of our country, but facts always have to come first,” Avalon said.
“When investigations turn up a very different fact pattern, it’s incumbent upon everyone to acknowledge it and adjust. Fidelity to the facts is all that we as journalists and citizens should ask,” he continued. “It’s understandable that there’s a desire to believe people when they say they’ve been victimized, but the accusations have to be backed up by facts, and when the facts don’t fit upon further review, we need to set the record straight with as much intensity as the initial reports.”
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